Sunday, November 11, 2012

This walk was brought to you by...

So, today I went for a walk around the block. In broad terms, the walk was two stages of about 2.3km each. I walked to the pharmacy at my local shopping centre (which IS definitely only walking distance away, not that I've ever done it since I've been here), and then I stopped for a bit of a rest and then I walked back home. In doing so I have done a big block, essentially. The block going to the pharmacy is mostly downhill with a small bit of uphill right at the start and towards the middle. The walk home is much harder in that the very last part of it is a climb uphill. Wouldn't be anything to a size 8 person weighing 50kg but to me, well, I felt a bit like that poor elephant in the picture! But the point is, it's done.

And why did I decide to do it today of all days? Interestingly enough, it's not because I saw a picture of a superfit athlete or read about the latest diet endorsed by the Kardashian family (which...blah!). No, it was because I read an article in the QWeekend magazine from last weekend. It was about a man who is in his early 30s. I wish I could link to the story but since I can't seem to find it online, I'll sum it up. In his late teens and early 20s this man had, through determination and knocking on doors and putting himself out there, landed an apprenticeship at a top Sydney North Shore restaurant. He was apparently one of the most promising young chefs in the country, on his way to the top. And then one night, he wrapped his car around a pole (no drink, drugs or wet roads involved - just one of those things) and just like that, his life changed forever and was reduced to him lying in bed all day with about the most severe form of quadriplegia that you can have, only really able to move his head from side to side, entirely dependent on carers for every aspect of his life. Not only that, I don't know much about being quadriplegic but apparently even though you can't move, you can still feel quite severe pain.

And you might ask, did this inspire me because this guy is being brave and putting on a face of strength against the enormous odds which confront him? No. Far from it. In fact, he isn't handling what's happened to him well at all. He gets very angry at life and at people and he does ask a lot "why me" and he laments what has been taken away from him. But who of us could honestly say we wouldn't react like that to such a situation? I can just about guarantee I'd be just as bad as he is and I think in a way he has every right to feel that way.

However, what it made me see was that I bet that guy would give anything to be in the sort of pain I am in when I go for a walk. I bet he wishes he could have a sore knee, a sore back, have difficulty doing physical things as I currently do. The thing is, there is nothing he can do about it. But me? I have the power to do anything I want to. I have the choice - he doesn't. I can choose to just get out there and do things to improve my situation (because if nothing changes, nothing changes, of course) or I can just lie around wishing things would change. News flash to self - they won't. Wishing I was fit and wishing I was thinner is not going to bring a genie in a bottle along to cast a spell on me and make it so.

So, in a roundabout way, what I'm trying to say is I've decided I'm going to make more effort and push past the unpleasantness and pain and difficulty which currently is how exercise is for me. The only way to change that is to do it as often as I can manage.

The storm has passed

Well, hello out there in blogland. It is now getting on towards halfway through November and I have just realised it's been a while since my last post. I know why, too. I guess you could say a storm in the form of problems with a work colleague came into my life and with that, the wheels fell off my train of good work with mindful eating and I was derailed. However, I remember when I first started this blog, I did mention this has been the pattern with a few different blogs I have begun over the last couple of years i.e. when things went bad I just stopped blogging and abandoned the whole process, thinking that a lack of perfection meant failure. I was determined this one would not go the same way. And so here I am, a bit battered around but not defeated and determined to make this the kind of journey where being "derailed" does not have to mean everything comes to a stop; where, in fact, being derailed can turn into a valuable life lesson which will really help me going forward.

I don't really want to talk about the issue with the work colleague. Suffice it to say that I've already given it FAR more airtime in my brain than it ever deserved, and all of it happened because of my faulty thought processes, which in turn stem from my bad self-esteem and depression issues. It's amazing how something which was (as confirmed by two witnesses who heard and saw the whole thing) just about entirely the fault of the other person has been allowed (by me) to become something to beat myself up about, something to distract me from good things I was doing in my life, something to reinforce how much I don't like me (sometimes). And as this is a pattern which has repeated since time immemorial, really, it's a classic case of that now rather cliched phrase "If nothing changes, nothing changes". So the first change has been to return to this blog and put this on paper. The next change is going to be to get back to what I have been doing and learning before the "derailment".

And while I'm on that subject, it isn't actually all bad news. I can't honestly say I went back to bingeing my head off as I was doing a lot earlier in the year. It was all quite restrained. In fact, a couple of times I thought that's what I really wanted and needed to do (because it's a go-to strategy for me) and in fact, I ended up not doing it. I've still been eating more slowly. I've still left food on my plate if I really felt too full to finish. So some of this good work has "stuck" and I think that's a huge positive. I'm now going to do something I rarely do - pat myself on the back for it, because I deserve it. :)

Another good thing which has happened in the past week or so, as I've been climbing out of my little hole, was reading this book which was recommended by EK:

Right at this moment, I would say I'm not EVEN a friend to myself, let alone my best friend, so I have some work to do here. But this work doesn't exist in a vacuum. It may seem like I'm trying to take on a lot (and it feels like it sometimes) in trying to change both my negative thought patterns and my dysfunctional eating behaviours all at the same time, but the fact is they are completely and utterly enmeshed for me so any work I do towards one will help the other immensely.

So this is where I am at today, warts and all. I'm going to be blogging again regularly now. Tonight I found a CD of really lovely relaxation music in amongst a box of forgotten stuff that I had at my parents' place until recently and I have to say it makes brilliant background music for what I'm doing. Watch this space - good things will happen again now. :) Peace out.